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BUS 352: Brand Management

BUS 352: Brand Managment (Winter 2022)

Brand Management (BUS 352) – Dr. Vahagn Asatryan

Project (30%) and Project presentation (5%) – 18-20 pages (and 1-page Executive Summary)

You will work in groups of five or six students, as assigned by your instructor, on a client project obtained by your instructor.  Your group will pick one country from a proposed list, conduct research, and prepare a report in the format outlined below. You need to approach this paper as a consulting firm providing information about this country and viable entry strategy to your client. You will use numerous outside resources (see Chicago citation guide) as well as the textbook materials to complete this assignment.

Part 1: As a branding team, prepare a written audit for your client that examines the current state of the brand. Part 1 will comprise 40% of the final grade for the project. This report of six or seven pages should include the following:

1.     Organization or business background: Briefly describe the organization’s key characteristics and history, mission statement, and ownership structure.

2.     Organizational objectives: Describe your client’s organizational goals and objectives. What are the current branding strategies? What are the core competencies? Perform a SWOT analysis and/or other analyses as listed in the Case Guide Series, as well as the relevant models discussed in class and the text.

3.     Marketing and branding objectives: Describe your client’s current marketing objectives and strategic approaches. Evaluate the management’s success in achieving those objectives. Describe the issues that hinder the organization from achieving those objectives.

4.     Discuss the current market situation and your client’s perceptions of the following:

a.      Product: be sure to include product lines or service elements in your description. If the organization is a not-for-profit entity, describe its programs (e.g. camp activities or offerings) and solutions or offerings. Your analysis should also identify what customer need is satisfied by this product or service.

b.     Price: provide ranges, describe the strategy used to develop the pricing, and any trends or patterns in the pricing tactics (when applicable). How does this compare to the competition?

c.      Promotion: describe elements of the current promotional plan including preferred elements (mass media, flyers, direct sales, direct mail, social media, etc.). Provide examples of each element in the appendix of your report.

d.     Segmentation: How is this market currently segmented? What bases are used by your client for segmenting the market, if at all?

e.      Target Market: Who is the current customer or benefactor of the organization’s offerings? How and why are customers choosing this product? How do they use this product?

f.      Competition analysis: How many competitors are in the market? Who are the major players? What are their marketing mix strategies? What are points of difference and points of similarity?

g.     Positioning: Describe how this product is distinguishable from others in its segment. Describe the current branding, including the current logo of the brand, and colour schemes among other brand elements, and examples of positioning statements.

h.     Conduct field research (when possible) and report findings:

i.      Reflect on your learning in this section: What would you do differently in part 2? What obstacles do you anticipate and how can you overcome them?

 Executive-in-Residence consultation:

 Your group will contact the Executive(s)-in-Residence (EiR) assigned for this class to set up one or two meetings to discuss your progress and seek EiR’s feedback. Include me (CC) in your e-mail communications. Attach the Minutes of these meetings and the summary of his or her suggestions, both for the Report and the Preliminary Presentation as an appendix to your Part 1 report.

 Format: Your report should be no longer than eight pages, excluding cover page, executive summary, and appendices. This report is due February 16.

Part 2: As the second part of the client project, prepare and present a branding strategy that meets the needs uncovered in Part 1 of the project, and that could be readily implemented by your client. This will require a significant amount of research, thinking, and planning. Present your recommendations and support them with the information you discovered in Part 1 of the project. Part 2 will constitute 60% of your project grade.

1.     Having identified the current state of the brand in Part 1 of the project, discuss how your proposed branding strategy will build the brand. Explain how the organization’s core competencies will support your recommendation, and how the firm’s strengths will enable the brand to take advantage of opportunities. What weaknesses will have to be mitigated so that threats in the environment will not preclude your strategy from being implemented successfully?

2.     Use the theories discussed during the course to craft your branding plan:

-        How will your plan to build brand equity and brand value? What are the values that drive the brand? What brand personality will you create with your brand? What are points of difference and points of similarity?

-        Craft a brand positioning statement for your client. What will the brand’s value proposition be? What will the brand image be? How will the elements of the marketing mix, including price, placement, promotion, etc. support, express, and enhance that image? What would the brand’s message be? What kind of archetype, personality, image, role character would you recommend?

-        Are you recommending a change to the brand name, logo, and/or slogans? If so, why? If not, how will the current brand components be used in the new branding strategy?

-        How do you propose to launch the new branding strategy? How will you track the success and report on the process? Include a proposed timeline for the implementation.

 Report Format: Your entire written plan (Part 1 and part 2) should be no more than 16 pages, excluding executive summary and appendices. Highlight modifications or additions made based on my feedback in Part 1.

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